Summer is right around the corner and I’m starting to feel the mood for going birdwatching with my loved ones. This is such a beautiful hobby that gives me plenty of scenery to admire and quality time spent with my family. If you feel like getting into birdwatching, you must be prepared with the right pair of binoculars. And sometimes the perfect pair might force you to ease up your wallet. Choosing the ideal binoculars is a master art because it takes years of practicing for observing the subtle changes of nuances and viewing characteristics. Optics is a field designed for perfectionists, therefore, it is very important to keep in mind some technical traits before buying birdwatching binoculars. I suggest reading some pieces of my advice but also go ahead and test some products until you find the one that suits your needs best.
You can’t possibly call yourself a birdwatch lover and not own a pair of good binoculars. They are the extension of your eyes. Therefore, one major feature you must keep in mind is power magnification. This is responsible for making the object larger even at a far distance. Technical specs include in general a set of two numbers; the first is responsible for the degree of magnification. I recommend opting for 8 to 10 range which is ideal for birdwatching.
As I previously mentioned, the first number from the set marked on the binoculars refers to magnification while the second one gives information about the amount of light that reaches the viewing area. Basically, the higher the number, the brighter you will see the targeted object. This is very significant especially if you plan to go birdwatching at dawn or dusk.
Another aspect you must consider is the field of view of the binoculars. You must be able to have a large spectrum of the area when observing birds. This way you can catch different species without moving the binoculars too much.
Don’t forget about image quality. I for sure prefer natural colors over filters. This is the main reason you should check the binoculars before to see whether they have a dual focus option to adjust. Also, while testing, see how great the construction of the eye relief is. Especially if you wear glasses, you will need something comfortable and adjustable. Most binoculars provide rubber sleeves which aren’t so durable so I prefer the twisting or the sliding eyepieces which are more practical.
Keep in mind the material and the size. Birdwatching is a wonderful experience but after hours spent in nature you will feel the burden of carrying a weight in your hand. If you like going in humid environments, waterproof binoculars are most suitable.
No matter what you choose, beware that birdwatching can become addictive so choose binoculars that can cure your bird curiosity!